Millennium Bridge Opens – and Closes

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Millennium Bridge Opens – and Closes

South Bank, London The 10th of June 2000 AD

The Millennium Bridge between Bankside and the City in London was not the only millennium project to be completed late – the London Eye for one shared that dubious honour – nor to be over budget – the Millennium Dome put into shade the £2 million overspend on the new Thames crossing. But it gained notoriety because it was closed – albeit temporarily - on the very day it opened, June 10 2000.
Undoubtedly beautiful, the bridge that provides a pedestrian-only crossing between the Globe and the Tate Modern on the south bank and St Paul’s the north began to wobble somewhat worryingly when it was used by walkers on a Save the Children charity event marking its opening. After two days the bridge not only had the nickname ‘the wobbly bridge’, but also had to close while a solution was found. The closure lasted two years, dampers fitted in that time solving the problem: crossing the bridge, well away from motorised traffic, is one of the simple – and free – pleasures of a day in the capital.
British history had at least one precedent for the problems: on April 14 1831 the Broughton Bridge in Manchester collapsed when soldiers marching across it in step created a resonance that led in its case to a sudden catastrophic failure.

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On this day:
Start of the Easter Uprising - 1916, Glorious Glosters Stand at Imjin River - 1951, Official opening of the Pennine Way - 1965, Bishopsgate Bombing - 1993
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